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Are Hybrid Mattresses Good For Side Sleepers? 5 Reasons You’ll Sleep Better…

Are Hybrid Mattresses Good For Side Sleepers? 5 Reasons You’ll Sleep Better…


Lindsey S.
Oct 31, 2023

Getting uninterrupted and restorative rest can be an uphill battle for side sleepers on the wrong mattress. Side sleeping may be the most popular sleep position, but not all mattresses are made for the unique needs of side snoozers. Whether you sleep on your right or left or switch between both, you'll need extra pressure relief around sensitive joints and reliable support to align your spine.

Enter hybrid mattresses: a modern combination of foam and innerspring mattresses. They've become a popular choice for side sleepers and may be the perfect fit for your next bed. In this guide, we'll explore the features that make hybrid mattresses ideal for side sleepers.

Are Hybrid Mattresses Good For Side Sleepers?

Yes, hybrid mattresses are good for side sleepers. The upper foam layers provide the cushioning and pressure point relief that side sleepers need while the coils underneath keep the spine healthily aligned. With dual technology, hybrids prove that a bed can be both comfortable and supportive for even the most sensitive side sleepers. Here are five key characteristics that make hybrid mattresses perfect for the side sleep position.

1) Soothing Pressure Relief

The side sleep position concentrates all your body weight onto one side, which can quickly become uncomfortable on a mattress that’s too stiff. That’s why traditional innerspring mattresses aren’t a good fit for most side sleepers. But, hybrid mattresses solve this problem with their cushioning comfort layers on top.

Hybrid mattresses typically feature numerous layers of polyurethane foam or latex foam for maximum pressure relief. The foam redistributes your body weight, spreading it across the mattress surface and lowering the peak pressure around your heaviest regions.

2) Cushioning for Sensitive Joints without Sinkage

Sleeping on your side also puts stress on two sensitive joints: shoulders and hips. Side sleepers need a mattress that contours to these curves and soothes tension but doesn’t let them sink too far into the bed. On a mattress that’s too soft or lacks structure, the shoulder and hip will dip into the mattress and unnaturally curve the spine.

Fortunately, hybrid mattresses offer the balanced cushioning and support that side sleepers require. The foam layers contour and comfort these pressure points, while the coils underneath provide heavy-duty reinforcement to prevent sinkage.

3) Deep Support for Spinal Alignment

Under the foam comfort layers, hybrid mattresses feature a coil core that helps straighten and uphold the spine. The steel springs add structure, strength, and stability, making hybrids a comfortable and ultra-durable option for side sleepers. Some luxury hybrid mattresses feature zoned coils, which provide targeted support in the areas that need even more resistance. The Nolah Evolution uses this technology for side sleeper comfort and spinal alignment, earning recognition as a best hybrid mattress for side sleepers.

4) Responsiveness Meets Motion Isolation

Many couples favor foam mattresses over innerspring mattresses because they prevent motion transfer. The foam absorbs movement, so you don’t feel when your partner tosses and turns in their sleep.

The upper comfort layers give hybrid mattresses this same property. While the flexible, individually-wrapped coils respond to your movements, the foam or latex layers on top dampen the motion so it doesn’t spread across the mattress surface. So, you can move as much as you need without waking your partner.

Why does this matter to side sleepers specifically? Many side sleepers shift positions or switch from one side to the other throughout the night, making motion isolation essential for a side sleeper mattress.

5) Ultimate Edge Support

Another perk of hybrid mattresses is that they provide better edge support than all-foam or latex models. The steel coils buttress the entire sleep surface and keep the edges from sinking under pressure. This feature benefits all sleepers, but side and side combination sleepers who share a bed or move around frequently find it especially helpful for uninterrupted sleep.

Want a detailed look at the inner workings of a hybrid bed? See our article What Is a Hybrid Mattress and Should You Buy One?

What Are The Best Hybrid Mattresses For Side Sleepers?

If you’re a side sleeper looking for a premium hybrid mattress, Nolah has you covered. Explore our lineup of cozy, deeply supportive hybrids below:

1) The Nolah Original Hybrid

  • Firmness Level: 6

  • Height: 11”

  • Layer Count: 5

  • Standout Features: Topped with Nolah AirFoam™ for maximum cooling, pressure relief, and durability

2) The Nolah Evolution

  • Firmness Level: 4-5, 6-7, or 7-8

  • Height: 15”

  • Layer Count: 7

  • Standout Features: Luxurious Euro topper, zoned AirFoam™, and HDMax™ Tri-Zone™ coils for targeted support

3) The Nolah Evolution Comfort+

  • Firmness Level: 6-7

  • Height: 14”

  • Layer Count: 7

  • Standout Features: Designed for plus-size sleepers

4) The Nolah Natural

  • Firmness Level: 6

  • Height: 11”

  • Layer Count: 6

  • Standout Features: Crafted with cool, responsive, and eco-friendly latex

5) The Nolah Nurture Kids Mattress

  • Firmness Level: 4-5 and 6-7

  • Height: 8”

  • Layer Count: 7

  • Standout Features: Flippable design with two firmness levels to choose from

Are Hybrid Mattresses Good For Sleep Health and Pain Relief?

We understand that not all side sleepers are alike—some have specific pain points that require extra attention when choosing a new mattress. If you’re a side sleeper with shoulder, hip, or back pain, here’s what you need to know about hybrid beds:

Side Sleepers with Shoulder Pain ✓

When you sleep on your side, your shoulder bears the brunt of your weight and digs into the mattress surface, so shoulder pain is a common complaint among side sleepers. If discomfort around your shoulder keeps you up at night, you’ll be happy to know that hybrid mattresses help alleviate this strain. The pressure-relieving foam top layers absorb tension and cushion this sensitive joint.

Side Sleepers with Hip Pain ✓

The same problem (and resolution) applies to hip pain. Hybrid mattresses work well for side sleepers who want cushioning for their hip joint but need deep support to prevent the hips from sinking and pulling the spine out of line. Side sleepers with hip pain can also try sleeping with a pillow between their knees to keep their hips from rotating.

Side Sleepers With Back Pain ✓

For side sleepers, a common cause of back pain is sleeping on a bed that's too plush and allows sinkage around the shoulders and hips, curving your spine. This won't be a problem on a hybrid mattress with a hefty coil core.

What Is The Best Type of Mattress for Side Sleepers?

Choosing the type of mattress that’s best for you is essential to getting quality sleep night after night. That’s why we’ve dedicated an entire guide to finding your fit. But in this article, we’ll address two of the most common questions we hear from shoppers:

  • 1)

    Which is better for side sleepers, a foam or hybrid mattress?

  • 2)

    Which should I choose, a foam hybrid or a latex natural hybrid?

Memory Foam vs. Hybrid Mattresses For Side Sleepers

All-foam and hybrid mattresses are both great choices for many side sleepers. Foam mattresses made with quality materials and multiple, durable layers provide the necessary pressure relief and support for many people who sleep on their sides. All-foam models also cost less than hybrids because they have fewer components, making them more budget friendly.

That said, there are some side sleepers who need the deep support and structure that only coils can provide. We generally recommend hybrid mattresses over all-foam mattresses to heavier side sleepers, those with severe back pain, and those who need enhanced edge support for accessibility or maximizing their sleep space.

Foam vs. Latex Hybrid Mattresses for Side Sleepers

As previously mentioned, a hybrid mattress can use polyurethane foam (polyfoam) or latex foam for the upper comfort layers. Both work great for side sleepers, so it comes down to personal preference.

Both foam types contour to your curves and cushion your joints, but they have a slightly different feel. Latex foam responds faster than most polyfoam blends, giving it a bouncier touch. A latex hybrid mattress is also an eco-friendly choice since latex is natural and sustainably sourced.

What Is The Best Mattress Firmness For Side Sleeping?

Your ideal firmness level also depends on your weight, but in general, a medium-firm mattress is best for side sleepers. A medium-firm surface (around 5-7 on the mattress firmness scale) offers side sleepers the comforting softness they need while providing enough resistance for proper spinal alignment.

A high-quality hybrid mattress with a plusher firmness rating may also provide the necessary support for a lighter side sleeper. The coil core will prevent the spine from falling out of line.

The Hybrid Choice for Side Sleepers

By combining the benefits of foam and innerspring mattresses, hybrids strike the perfect balance between comfort and support for side sleepers. A hybrid mattress simultaneously soothes a side sleeper’s joints while providing the underlying support required for proper spinal alignment. An advanced hybrid mattress is a two-in-one fit any side sleeper will love.

Disclaimer: Nolah does not provide medical advice. All resources on the Nolah blog, including this article, are informational only and do not replace professional medical counsel. Talk to your doctor about any health, mental health, or sleep-related issues.

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